In the February edition of “School Days,” the U.S. Department of Education’s monthly video journal, President Obama names the first states to receive flexibility from the requirements of No Child Left Behind, Secretary Arne Duncan visits the Green Schools National Conference, the Administration proposes new education investments in the Fiscal Year 2013 budget, and ED unveils the RESPECT project aimed at transforming the teaching profession – and lots more. Don’t miss clips from the NBA Celebrity All-Star Game and The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
Duncan testifies on proposed 2013 education budget
March 23, 2012 - 3:00am
By Libby A. Nelson
WASHINGTON — As more details became clear Thursday about the effect a proposed Republican budget would have on education programs, Education Secretary Arne Duncan defended the Obama administration’s higher education proposals against skeptical members of Congress.
At a hearing of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies, Duncan summarized the administration’s plans for higher education, including a Race to the Top-like program for college affordability and completion and a major expansion of the Perkins Loan Program. While much of the discussion was about elementary and secondary education, many of the most pointed questions from members of Congress dealt with the administration’s proposed new spending on higher education.
Much of the administration’s proposed $1.7 billion increase in the Education Department’s discretionary budget for 2013 will go to higher education, including the Perkins loan expansion, the Race to the Top for College Affordability and Completion, and Obama’s proposed $8 billion in new mandatory spending for community colleges, Duncan said. What it won’t do, in many cases, is add new money to existing programs, including the TRIO and GEAR UP programs for college readiness and federal aid that helps minority-serving colleges. (NOTE: This paragraph has been updated to correct an error.)
News stories in this month’s “School Days,” the video journal of the U.S. Department of Education, include President Obama’s speech on the importance of education for middle class prosperity; Secretary Arne Duncan’s celebration of the teaching profession; and a number of large grants for education reform.
GEAR UP Week Celebrations Are Gearing Up Everywhere #NGUW11
WASHINGTON, DC /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — In Prince Georges County Maryland, schools are conducting workshops this week to inform parents of the college-going prospects of students enrolled in the GEAR UP college readiness program, and provide suggestions on how parents can assist every child to achieve success in post-secondary education.
In Puerto Rico, GEAR UP students are writing on the walls - Dream Walls - filling poster-size sheets with their goals for higher education and life beyond high school.
At Laramie County Community College in Wyoming, and in schools across California, students are writing thank-you letters to Members of Congress for keeping GEAR UP alive and well in their communities and across the nation.
It’s all in celebration of National GEAR UP Week, Oct. 24 to 28, marking the success and the future prospects of Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs. GEAR UP, created by Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-PA) more than a decade ago, prepares low-income and underserved students from sixth to 12th grades for the challenge and importance of education beyond high school graduation.
This week is National GEAR UP Week, an event highlighting the positive impact that GEAR UP (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs), has had on students, families, schools, and communities since Congress authorized the program thirteen years ago. GEAR UP provides six-year grants to states and partnerships to increase the number of low-income students who are prepared to enter and succeed in postsecondary education.
In Chicago, the Freshman Connection program is a great example of a successful GEAR UP partnership grant program in action. The program, sponsored by Northeastern Illinois University and Chicago Public Schools, is free and held during the summer at high schools across the city for rising ninth grade students to prepare them for the rigors of a high school education. In the span of a month, students make new friends, take field trips, meet teachers and counselors, learn graduation requirements, get ready for classes, and explore college and careers.
Ninety percent of the Class of 2011, the first graduates of Freshman Connection, will have completed their federal student aid forms, which is a crucial step in informing families that college tuition is within reach. The federal government’s GEAR UP grant is key to Freshman Connection’s success in helping students and families through mentoring, and parent involvement. State grant programs across the country have implemented similar college access initiatives that target dual enrollment and the use of CLEP testing to earn college credit.
To prepare students for success in the 21st Century economy, higher education must be within the reach of every American. Programs such as Freshman Connection are essential to help meet President Obama’s goal of leading the world in college completion by 2020. Watch Secretary Duncan speak about the importance of higher education and National GEAR UP Week for a celebration event in Philadelphia, Pa.
Educational Partnership Center receives $14 million in federal outreach grants
October 07, 2011 By Curt Anderson
UC Santa Cruz’s Educational Partnership Center has been awarded two GEAR UP federal grants to serve students in Pajaro Valley and South Monterey County. The grants will fund UCSC’s outreach to local underserved students and amount to a little over $2.3 million annually for both grants and close to $14 million dollars over the next six years.
“The GEAR UP College Access programs are vital to our efforts to support lower-income students in their aspirations of joining the University of California,” said Richard Hughey, vice provost and dean of undergraduate education. “I am particularly excited about UCSC’s opportunity to work with regional schools and to help students explore the possibilities of advanced education and student research on our campus.”
The U.S. Department of Education received 262 eligible partnership applications, funding only 47 applications, 9 of which were in California. In total the federal government released $177.4 million for 66 grants under Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) that will help some 275,000 at-risk students to prepare for college and receive the support they need to achieve success in postsecondary education.
You know that GEAR UP works. Let's share those stories with everybody!
Have you visited with your Members of Congress lately? Or, had them attend one of your events? Tell us about it! Did you recently host a cool activity? Post your pictures or video. Was your site featured in the local press? Make sure you post it here!
We want to hear from YOU, so tell us everything you want about your students, staff, parents and programs... and let's make sure everybody knows that GEAR UP works!